Saturday, 27 August 2011

The Guild, Fylde, Preston

My intrepid weekly jaunts have so far taken me out to sup pints in a wide range of venues, from wonky-windowed old country pubs, to bargain-priced sports bars and, ahem, ‘suburban gastro’ pubs.
But, there is one very important element right at the heart of our city’s nightlife, which I have so far neglected to include - the student pub.
It cannot be overstated how much Preston relies on the ever-increasing flow of students pouring into the city laden with student loans, which are very quickly exchanged for drinks and big old night outs.
In the vicinity of the University of Central Lancashire there are a glut of pubs which cater for just these people.
Your archetypal student pub is not hard to spot, it is usually painted a funny colour on the outside and packed with funky furniture on the inside.
If in any doubt as to the intended audience, look out for big kids’ toys like a punch machine or arcades.
I decided to head for The Guild because I knew they would be serving at least two real ales and the ‘entertainment’ machines had been removed.
It is a big  imposing pub with lots of seating areas, including leather seats ideal for sinking back to force someone else to get in a round.
There are also screens dotted around the pub showing live sports including Premier League football.
But when a match is on, the seats particularly the lazy leather numbers, are taken quickly.
For me the best feature of the pub is a television screen which is set above a double doors facing through a window outside.
It means that on a fine day you can sit under the covered terraced area or on one of the benches behind and enjoy a match without missing a rare day of sunshine.
The ‘outdoor screen’ is limited in that you have to be square on to get a good view, so you will need to get there early to get a good seat.
But then again you will be sitting out in the sun so it doesn’t really matter.
In fact as far as outdoor drinking goes, the pub has much more space and many more benches than any of its neighbouring venues.
So if you want to take inside outside, this might be the place to go.

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